Front Page Titles (by Subject) SECTION IV.: INFORMATION REQUISITE FROM PETITIONING SUITORS. - The Works of Jeremy Bentham, vol. 3
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SECTION IV.: INFORMATION REQUISITE FROM PETITIONING SUITORS. - Jeremy Bentham, The Works of Jeremy Bentham, vol. 3 
The Works of Jeremy Bentham, published under the Superintendence of his Executor, John Bowring (Edinburgh: William Tait, 1838-1843). 11 vols. Vol. 3.
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INFORMATION REQUISITE FROM PETITIONING SUITORS.
1. Now as to the heads, under each of which, at your hands, if it be your wish to take the benefit of the proposed transference, information will be necessary or may be desirable.
2. Some there are, in relation to which it will be matter of necessity that information should be received:—received, if not by myself, at any rate by the Member by whom the Bill is moved; to the end that, if received by both, we may settle with one another, whether the number of the suits from which the communication has come, be sufficient to afford a sufficient ground for the hope that the measure will experience the requisite attention on the part of the Honourable House.
3. The information had best, all of it, be in the handwriting of the proposed Petitioner; it must be under his or her signature.
4. It may be attached to a printed copy of the proposed Petition to the King.
5. Each article of the information should be numbered with the same number as that by which the head it belongs to is distinguished.
6. Desirable it is, that the paper should receive this identification, as a security for correctness; and that the information conveyed by it may be always under the eyes of those to whom it belongs to have it under consideration, and without being exposed to the hazard of being mislaid after it has been received.
7. Of this indispensable part of the whole number of the particulars, the eventual purpose will be—the constituting your title to vote at the election of the Judge; but the election will not take place, nor, consequently, you or your agent be called upon to appear, unless and until the Act has passed: the petition will be your title-deed.
8. As to the other heads,—it may be, that you are not, of yourself, able to furnish the information, and that your solicitor is the only person through whom you are able to procure it. These are among the heads, in relation to which, in the event of the passing of the Act, and the institution of the Court in consequence,—the solicitor will have to be examined by the Judge, to enable the Judge to determine whether to take the suit under his cognizance.
9. But, the more there are of those heads, in relation to which the information is conveyed to myself and the Member in question, the better; our conception of the nature of the suit, and of the quality and quantity of the benefit to you that may be expected from the whole measure, will be the more particular and encouraging.
10. Of this information, any part which you yourself are not able to furnish, you will see how imprudent it would be for you to apply for at the hands of your solicitor, unless it be perfectly clear to you, that your learned adviser is so circumstanced, as to be really desirous of seeing the speediest termination put to the suit, and consequently to his profits from it.
HEADS UNDER WHICH THE INFORMATION IS TO BE WRITTEN.*
1. The proposed Petitioner—his or her name at full length.
2. Petitioner’s age; so far as to show whether it is full age or under age.
3. Petitioner’s condition in respect of marriage: whether bachelor, married man, or widower; spinster, married woman, or widow.
4. Petitioner’s occupation, or other condition in respect of rank and situation in life: for example, in the male sex, Member of either Houses of Parliament;—Member of the Official Establishment, mentioning the office held by him;—person of either sex living upon his or her fortune. If a married woman, the like in regard to her husband.
5. Petitioner’s residence at the time of transmitting the information; the description given of it being such, that a LETTER may be sure of reaching him or her.
6. Indication of any change contemplated at the time by him or her: with promise to give the like information, in case of any eventual change, up to the time when leave to bring in the Bill is refused, or the Bill thrown out.
7. Name of the suit in the Equity Court.
8. Name of the Court itself; whether Chancery or Exchequer; if Chancery, whether Chancellor’s, Vice-Chancellor’s, or Master’s of the Rolls. If in the House of Lords on appeal, whether it is from the Chancery or the Exchequer.
9. Names of the several parties to the suit: mentioning whether they are so in their own right respectively, or in the right of some other person or persons: adding, in this latter case, information as to their respective principals, under the six first of the above heads.*
10. In the case of a person who is a party concerned in right of another,—state in what capacity he or she is thus concerned: for example, husband; guardian; executor; administrator; residuary legatee; agent whose principal (mentioning whom) is resident out of England, trustee of money in trust for payment of debts; principally acting member of a joint-stock company: in the case of a partnership, the like information in respect of each of the partners: in the case of a suit of which a ship is the subject-matter,—name of the ship, with the names of the several persons therein interested as owners, and information under the above six heads as to each.†
11. Subject-matter of the demand made by the suit.
12. Day of the commencement of the suit.
13. In case of any bills subsequent to that in which the suit took its commencement, mention thereof respectively: for example, whether supplemental bill, or bill of revivor.
14. If the bill be a bill for the examination of witnesses in perpetuam rei memoriam, mention accordingly.
15. Stage of the suit: to wit, as expressed by the written instruments that have been made or required to be made, with their respective dates: as answers, demurrers, pleas, &c.: giving a separate account, in relation to each of the several sorts of bills filed, if more than one, on the occasion of the same original bill, as per No. 13.
16. If examination of witnesses (including parties examined in the manner of witnesses) is going on, mention of the day on which it commenced.
17. If the suit is before a Master,—mention whom, and at what time it went before him, and for what purpose.
18. Town Solicitor or Solicitors, who: with direction to their office.
19. Aggregate expense of the suit to the Petitioner, down to the day of communication: distinguishing, if there be no objection, between expense paid by him and expense incurred.
20. Aggregate expense, as far as can be learnt, or computed, of the several other parties respectively, or of the aggregate of all, down to the day of the communication.
21. So any estimate that can be made, of ulterior expense.
22. Make mention of the aggregate of the expense of any branch of the proceedings which happen to be in a particular degree expensive; giving, in this case, the particulars of the expense: for example; commission to examine witnesses, at home or abroad; costs of the sale of an estate in land, or of making out the title to such an estate.‡
To conclude. You have now seen a short sketch of the species of procedure proposed, with the judicatory for the application of it.
From this, short and necessarily imperfect as it is, some judgment may be formed by you, whether the plan does not afford some promise of relief from the torment under which you are suffering. If, with this before you, you remain motionless,—be this your torment ever so severe, you have yourselves to thank for it. By sympathy for your sufferings have been produced the labours, of which the system you see before you is the fruit. Will you be any longer an object of sympathy, if, by silence instead of answer to this address, after so much has been done for you by others, you grudge to perform so trifling a labour for yourself?
The greater the number in which you and your partners in affliction raise your cry for this relief, the greater will be the probability of your obtaining it. This truth being alike obvious and incontestable, not less so will be the service that may be done by you to your own and the common cause, by looking out for them, and calling for their co-operation.
And you, whom, as yet univisited by this scourge, these pages have chanced to reach,—sympathy,—if any such feeling belongs to you, and no particular interest restrains,—will elict from your hands, according to your means and opportunities, all assistant services. “Cry then aloud, and spare not!”
EQUITY DISPATCH COURT BILL: BEING A BILL FOR THE INSTITUTION OF AN EXPERIMENTAL JUDICATORY UNDER THE NAME OF THE COURT OF DISPATCH,
[* ]In the original edition, these heads are printed only on one side of the leaf. Appended to them are the following
Directions for communicating the information.
2. Placing both leaves on one level, at the top of the length of it, and at the middle of the breadth, paste one of the leaves of this pamphlet: for this purpose it is that these leaves are printed on one side only.
3. Do so, by each of the leaves which are printed for this same purpose.
4. Write the matter in a fair and compact hand: if perpendicular, so much the better; because the more legible.
5. Of the paper in question, that part which is below the letter-press divide into four equal columns, for receiving the information in manuscript: columns thus narrow in preference to the whole breadth. Leave the two spaces, one on one side, one on the other, of the letter-press, in blank, for the purpose of receiving any such observations as I may see occasion to make.
[* ]As to heads 8 and 9,—note, that some persons there can scarcely but be, who may not be able to forward correct information in relation to thoseheads. So, perhaps, under No. 7.
[† ]A remark here is necessary in regard to trustees. At the hands of one who is party to a suit, no otherwise than in compliance with the forms employed by conveyancers, without his having had any confidence reposed in him—no reason can there be why any information should be looked for; no reason why any participation in the Petition should be considered as requisite, or conducive to the purpose of it.
[‡ ]A case is just now mentioned to me, in which the costs of the commission to examine witnesses amounted to £9000: this from a person who was in possession of the particulars.